John Barnes explains why fans should not want John W Henry to sell Liverpool

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Former Liverpool forward John Barnes has urged Liverpool fans to reconsider any thoughts about wanting John Henry to sell the club following the Super League debacle.

Barnes says if any Liverpool fans want Henry to sell the club then they need to think about who would then need to replace him. If Henry sold Liverpool, Barnes says another businessman would take his place with the same disregard for fan opinions.

This comes after Henry posted an apology video following his decision to withdraw Liverpool from the Super League, after fan backlash over their involvement in the project.

Speaking to BBC Breakfast, as transcribed by TeamTalk, Barnes offered his thoughts on Henry’s position at Liverpool. “If Liverpool fans are unhappy and they say they want to get rid of John Henry and want him to sell the club, who do they want him to sell the club to? Somebody with more money than him?

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“If somebody comes in with the same amount of money, how do you think they got that money? By making decisions based on finance without regard (for the fans).

“The only way it (football) will work is if we can control football by bringing a salary cap in, controlling it, reviewing it, being better audited, so that it’s a level playing field for every team in the Premier League, so they can all spend the same amount of money.”


Barnes’ comments on Henry seem logical. If a person or group has enough money to buy a club the size of Liverpool, the chances are they are excellent business people and that means they care more about finance than the passion of fans, as Barnes explains. This means that Liverpool fans may not get someone who is more inclined to listen to what they want if Henry sells, which makes wanting him to sell the club a fruitless endeavor.

A salary cap, however, is a far more complex issue. Where do you start? Every Premier League club already has 20-25 – or more in some cases – professional footballers on their books and every club has a different wage structure. How can you enforce a wage cap now when a club like Manchester City could be paying one player more than Sheffield United are paying 10 players?

Creating a level playing field in a division where the field is as level as the Himalayas could be incredibly difficult, but it could be something that the league is able to work on over a number of years. As Barnes says, it could help to control football and allow it to be audited better, it is just a matter of how they can get to a point where it is a feasible option.